[Sca-cooks] Large birds for feasts

Johnna Holloway johnnae at mac.com
Fri Mar 4 07:37:24 PST 2011

Culinary historians often point to a lag time between a food's  
appearance or mention
in letters, diaries, household accounts, menus, even artwork, etc. and  
when we start finding recipes in a printed book or a recipe in a  
manuscript.  It's not just a matter of the turkey. In this case  
perhaps no instructions were needed. It was just another large bird  
and people ate and enjoyed large birds as a matter of course. What I  
found in my research for my paper on the turkey was that the famous  
carving rhyme of Boke of Keruynge from 1508 might have mentioned  
explicitly “Dysmembre that heron. Dysplaye that crane. Dysfygure that  
pecocke. Unjoynt that bytture," the “unjoynt that bytture” changes  
later to very detailed instructions for the reader on how “To cut up a  
Turkie or Bustard.”


On Mar 4, 2011, at 10:24 AM, Jennifer Carlson wrote:

> I wonder what the time lag is between a food item's introduction and  
> it's first recorded recipe.  snipped  So, you are seeing in  
> correspondence and art the better part of a century of turkeys in  
> Spain and Italy, but the first recipe appeared when?  And for how  
> long after their introduction, some time between 1502 and 1522, were  
> they novelty items and a luxury food before there were enough birds  
> for a wider dissemination?  How long before cooks got enough  
> experience working with turkeys to figure out the best ways to  
> prepare, season, and serve them? Just pondering, Talana

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